Saturday, February 6, 2016

Universal's Harry Potter Celebration 2016: Expo Tour and Alan Rickman Tributes

Last post I covered all the awesome costumes from Universal's Potter Celebration, so now let's take a look at the special exhibits and events they had going throughout the weekend. 

First, and probably the biggest draw, there were several cast Q&As on the main stage:

These included the actors who played Ron, Cho Chang, Ginny, Neville, and Luna.  

 

We especially enjoyed Neville's 70's 'stache and sideburns - which he mentioned are for a new project:
 :D
The giant screens were really helpful, and even standing as far back as we were, I could hear a lot of their answers. (The Leaky Cauldron live-streamed some of these panels, btw, so click this way to watch video of them!)

The other two special attractions had enormous lines all weekend, so we didn't bother waiting for The Sorting Hat Experience:

Essentially a cast member holds the hat over your head, and a recording of the Hat's voice calls out which House you belong to. SO not worth a two-hour wait, unless maybe you have little ones.

The thing worth waiting for was the special Potter Expo:

This wait never went under an hour all three days we were there, and it even closed early 2 of the 3 days because the crowds were so big. Universal made the wait bearable by showing the cast Q&A or the movies on a giant screen over the queue, though, which was a nice touch.

Once inside you could shuffle through a short line arranged around a bunch of merchandise displays:

Oddly enough you couldn't buy any of this stuff there, though; this giant Fluffy and the Fawkes over head were from FAO Schwartz.


These Hedwig and Buckbeak hats were pretty much the greatest things in the entire building:


 
Your face sticks out Hedwig's belly, you guys. I want to hug whoever designed this.

 I also approve of anything with the Bertie Bott's packaging on it:
 

 LEGO Hogwarts:
 

And here's a gorgeous Patronus dress from Black Milk:

The reason this line existed was to pick up your free poster. And not only were they giving away something for free, it was something AWESOME for free:


The text is metallic gold, and it's printed on a heavy watercolor paper. Super pretty.

We got one per person, so I'm giving away our extra one at the end of this post. Keep reading.

Arranged around the big Expo room were a series of booths. Here's Mina Lima's:

They designed everything written or printed in the movies, and you can buy prints and note cards of their work - which tend to be quite pricey.


Their floor was fun:



And they had this sweet letter mobile that would be perfect for parties:

 

 Here's the Pottermore booth:


They had a series of computer stations to sort you into your House.
They also had this map just outside:

I know now this is a reference to the new Wizarding schools Rowling just announced, but at the time we had no idea. I'm really surprised they didn't call more attention to it at the booth.

I'm just now getting to the best part of the Expo - which unfortunately required waiting in yet another hour-long line:

This mini studio tour was designed to give us a taste of the big one in London. We had no idea what to expect inside, so I was pleasantly surprised in the end.

First, a pretty picture on the outside wall:
 

 The first room was the best: 



Here we got to watch two of the actual wand-makers from the movies make real wooden wands. The woman operating the lathe even designed the original Elder wand!


While they worked, a man off to the side told us what they were doing, and showed off some silicone wand molds and rubber prop wands they used while filming. 

The wands they were making here were a mix of movie-used designs and some super fun free-form stuff they came up with on their own:
 Look how cool: 

Tiny pumpkin!!

And look at this little owl, which was way in the back:
I'm making involuntary "gimmie" noises right now, you guys. Waaaaaaant

Next we were shuffled through here:


To look at this makeup table:
 

Here a lady showed us three of the screen-used items:

Ew.

This plastic dome is Harry's scar stencil:

 And that's one of Ron's wigs.

The final room was a quick photo op with a Death Eater wearing a screen-used costume:

The whole tour took less than 15 minutes, but that wand room alone was worth the wait!

Back out on the Expo floor, there was also a large display for the new Potter play, and of course a large gift shop area:

Fun goodies.


On Saturday there were several fan-organized tributes to Alan Rickman, and we ended up seeing three of them in the span of 15 minutes near the Night Bus:

 Wands up for Rickman.



The largest tribute was organized by MuggleNet, which first rescheduled from Friday to Saturday, then cancelled the whole thing 10 minutes beforehand on Facebook, and finally moved the event by just yelling at everyone by the bus to move over to Grimmauld Place, because a different group was now meeting by the bus? I think? It was all very confusing.
 

They held a reading on the steps, but most of us couldn't hear them, so we just stood around awkwardly until they raised their wands.


Personally I found the first - and smallest - tribute the most moving, since it was more like a silent flash mob of people raising their wands. This one was chaotic and loud, which was disappointing.

 And finally, to end on a sweet note:

 There's a new candy shop in Diagon Alley!

 Sugarplum's Sweet Shop replaces the old photo studio, which moved over by Madame Malkin's a month or two ago. The Sweet Shop had just opened the week before the Celebration, so it was a fun surprise:

 I love the window displays.

Even better, inside the shop John had a fascinating conversation with one of the workers about how her strict Warlock father home-schooled her instead of letting her go to Hogwarts. That's some A+ dedication to theme, my friends. Love it.


This shop isn't Potter Celebration-specific, of course, but who can resist ending with a little eye candy?

Hope you guys enjoyed your virtual tour!

***

Oh, and comment below if you'd like to win that Hogwarts poster! I'll ship anywhere, so international comments are welcome.  I'll announce the randomly selected winner in my next post.

 UPDATE: The give-away has ended, and the winner of the Harry Potter poster from my last post IS...

Kate Mulhauser

AND

the Christina who said she and her daughter would probably frame this and put it over their TV. (And I'll hold ya to that, Christina. ;))

Yes, I decided to give both our posters away. You guys are just too sweet, and I'm out of wall space anyway! So congrats to both my winners, and please e-mail me your mailing addresses, ladies!

472 comments:

  1. That is SO COOL - I wish I had gone, just to see the wands, if nothing else. I wonder if they will ever get around to selling anything like them? They must have taken forever to make.

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  2. I was hoping I'd get to go this year but it wasn't in the cards, unfortunately. Love seeing your pics!

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  3. My husband and I just started reading Scorceror's Stone to our little one. It's such a magical experience! I know she'd love to hang the poster in her room.

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  4. That poster is beautiful! I'd love to hang it on my wall!

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  5. How terribly exciting! I love all things HP! I wish I could go to a place like Disney World or Universal! Sadly the crowds aren't very safe for someone with a suppressed immune system like mine. Thanks for sharing Jen! Your posts always make me feel like I get a taste of the magic anyway! I love it! <3

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  6. Thanks for the virtual tour. Wish I could get back down there to see all the new bits. We were there about 4 years ago.

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  7. And, yes, I would love to win the poster. Thanks for the chance to win.

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  8. Oh my daughter would so love that poster. At 8, she is a more recent Potter fan and she's very devoted. She was Hermione for Halloween. We haven't yet been able to get her to Disney, but she's already scrapped that idea for Universal, specifically for the Harry Potter part. I always show her your pictures whenever you post about it. She and her little brother really enjoyed your video of the fire breathing dragon. And now I may have to hunt down a Hedwig hat.

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  9. That's so cool! I got to go to the London studio tour in 2014 and it was amazing. Mom and I always said we were going to make our way to FL, but now that they're opening one on this coast I'm waiting for that. Thank you for sharing all your pictures!

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  10. I've followed you for a couple of years now I love your posts both here and at cake wrecks. Need to get to Florida to see Universal and Disney.

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  11. I would love that poster! Started reading Harry Potter to my little bit and now he's just as excited to get to Universal and get his own wand as I am!

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  12. Gah I wished I could visit places like that! Living in Australia means saving saving saving to one day visit!

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  13. Oh my goodness - that sounds like such a fun event! I'm way over on the other side of the continent, so I'm jealous that you & John are so close to it :)

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  14. Thanks for the virtual HP experience. Your photos never fail to impress!

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  15. Put me in for a chance to win that poster please! *so pretty*

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  16. I would have loved to have been there! How fun! You and John have great adventures!

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  17. Such a cool event! And gorgeous photos, as always.

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  18. That poster is stunning!

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  19. That poster is so cool! What an awesome experience! It is on my bucket list!

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  20. How cool! I'm so jealous of your repeated visits; I desperately want to go but it isn't really in the cards right now. We'll have to wait until our little witch is old enough to enjoy it! I'd rather go with my old friends from high school; we went to all the midnight releases together when the books came out, but now we're living all over the country.

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  21. The magic of Elsa, and of Harry Potter make my room as close to a safe space as I can get (I am cuddling with my Frozen-colored owl pillow right now, and my Hedwig puppet is watching over me). The Hogwarts Express is always the best reminder to this disordered girl that Harry did not start out in the world that he belonged in either - that there are still so many, and such varied journeys to come. Thank you for sharing. I would be ecstatic to win the poster.

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  22. I can't wait until I finally get to make it out to the Harry Potter world! I always love seeing your photos -- it's the next best thing to being there!

    Put me down for the poster drawing, too! That thing is gorgous!

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  23. I can't wait until I can finally afford to go! At least I get to see awesome pics (that just make me want to go more) that you post. I am a huge fan of the books and the movies and would love to have that poster! Thanks for the awesome eye candy!

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  24. Love the post, thanks for letting get my HP geek on through you.

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  26. Everything from the event looks so cool! I would have loved to go, as I just got my Universal Annual Pass, but I'm not going into the Harry Potter sections until my family comes down to visit at Spring Break - I introduced my littlest brother to Harry Potter by giving him one book at a time from when he was 8 to when he turned 12 to space them out for him, so I'm really excited for both of us to go visit Hogwarts for the first time together. I'd love to be entered for the poster, though!

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  27. Oh jeez, so jealous. Literally grew up with Harry Potter and would have loved to attend the celebration.

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  28. omg this is amazing! That poster is beautiful!

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  29. That poster is beautiful - would love to win it, since I haven't a hope of going to Florida anytime soon. :)

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  30. I always just assumed these HP celebrations at Universal cost extra on top of admission! I'll have to get off my butt and go next time.

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  31. Your Harry Potter posts are my favourite. Would love to go to a place like this some day. Sadly they mostly seem to be in the US, and with our dollar exchange rate being so horrible right now, that won't happen any time soon. The poster is gorgeous, btw!

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  32. SO cool! I'm so excited that they're putting one of these on my side of the country. I almost think it would be worth it to work retail again if I got to live out my fantasy wizard life with customers. Also, I would love to win the poster!

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  33. Sounds like a truly magical event! Thank you for sharing so that those of us far away got to experience some potter magic!

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  34. Amazing pictures! That poster looks gorgeous :D

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  35. Oh man, I want the poster! We went for my 30th birthday in 2011 and it was the best!

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  36. I love to see your pictures and live vicariously through you since I may never actually make it to Florida!

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  37. OMG, I would LOVE that poster!! It's gorgeous!! <3 I love how they feature the owls, I'm sort of addicted! <3 Thanks for sharing all of the photos, being on the West Coast means we don't get as much fun Potter stuff!

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  38. That poster is so pretty! Totally worth the wait!

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  39. Thanks for posting about this, someday I hope to get there! I would live the poster!

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  40. This Hermione is insanely jealous. Those wands! And Hedwig hats! And I bet that sweet shop has amazing chocolate... Thanks for the photos!

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  41. Lovely posts. I'd love to someday visit the WW, but I'd settle for a poster in the meantime! :)

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  42. What a fantastic time, wish I could have gone! The poster looks amazing too!!

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  43. I visited WWOHP in 2011, but I need to go back and see Diagon Alley! That she'd wig hat has to be the least dignified yet most amazing thing I've ever seen.

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  44. Man, I've been following for almost a year, and it's taken me this long to reach the point I can post. I love reading your posts, both here and Cake Wrecks, but I especially love how enthusiastic you are about your fandom. It helps that I share quite a few of them myself, but even the few I don't I get excited just because your text shows you are.

    And of course, the times your posts make me jealous of where you live. Like when you get a chance to find such a beautiful poster. (All of this is very heartfelt, but I also would like a chance to win the poster please.)

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  45. Oh my, I haven't been to Universal since 2009? 2010? I only get to experience all the new Harry Potter additions via you c: I wish the expo toured around the country!

    That poster is just gorgeous - I wonder if they sell it anywhere online? I can't believe they were giving them away for free!

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  46. That poster is amazing. I wouldn't mind a copy. :)

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  47. I am jealous- until Canadian dollar goes up, I won't be doing any travel to the US.

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  48. My oldest son is a huge Potter fan. He would love that poster!

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  49. Incredible! I really wish I could make it across to the states for this, even though the UK has the studio tour. Would love a copy of that poster!

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  50. So jealous, that looks like an awesome time (minus all the waiting!). And the poster is gorgeous!

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  51. I must get to the London Experience - we were staying 15 minutrs from it last summer and couldn't make it! *facepalm*

    I would dearly love that poster, though! Wands up for Rickman!

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  52. Sounds like you had a great time. Thanks for sharing it with us. I would love to win the poster! Fingers crossed!!!

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  53. The wand making station looked really amazing, your photography really made it shine

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  54. That map though. I hope people make posters of that ...

    But would love the cover poster as well of course!

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  55. Love the poster! Isn't that the cover of the new illustrated edition? I was really impressed by all the work the illustrator put into it (like building Hogwarts from cardboard for perspective reference and modeling friends and strangers on trains and whatnot for the portraits).

    Love the wand shop, too!

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  56. I'm going to have to go one of these days, that looks so cool!

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  57. Wow. I may actually have to drag myself to Florida to check that out! I love that poster!

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  58. When I was growing up, my dream in life was to visit Disney World. Now, it is my dream to visit Universal Studios for the Harry Potter stuff. And maybe Disney World too. xD

    I'd love to be entered for the poster giveaway!

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  59. Times like these make me super bummed I don't live in Florida. Super tempted to take a 7 hour drive to see all of this though. But I love living vicariously through you guys! And the poster is gorgeous.

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  60. I love all the effort all the Potter related shows/displays/visitor things seem to go to, which always seems to be proof of the dedication of the fans. I've never been to any of them when I see pictures and I'm always impressed and want to buy all the things!

    And that poster is gorgeous, sign me up for the competition please!

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  61. I'm a HUGE potter fan, and that poster is gorgeous! Please put my name in the drawing. :)
    Krystine McCants

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  63. Those wands are really cool! I'm totally picturing that letter mobile worked into next year's Potter Tree display at Casa Yates. :)

    Thanks for braving the crowds (my least favorite part) and waiting in all those lines so we could see everything.
    -Zippy

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  64. I NEED to take another trip down to Orlando! Thank you so much for sharing!

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  65. Thank you for sharing the experience! I wish we could get down to Florida again... Or London, for the studio tour!

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  66. Wow! So much Potter goodness - love the poster especially.

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  67. You are so lucky to be close to all this! I would love the poster as well.

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  68. I know someone who would love the poster! Hoping to win.

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  69. Oh I wish I could have gone! Lots of waiting, but it looks worth it. Especially now that my daughter is really getting into Harry Potter, too. I honestly teared up at that first picture of everyone raising their wands for Alan Rickman. Anywho, that poster is gorgeous! I'm crossing my fingers that I win, of course. It would look awesome in my room... I mean, my daughter's room! ;) Who am I kidding, we would probably frame it and put it above the TV in our living room.

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  70. Love getting to see all these wonderful things I'm not able for o go to ;) Thank you for sharing with us! And I would love to have the poster for my classroom.

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  71. I'm going to Universal in October, but I doubt they'll be giving away free posters then! I would love to win...not gonna lie; would probably pee my pants a little if I did! I was given a signed Dreathly Hallows a couple years ago, and am waiting to get a wand to make a shadow box display...I would put the poster as the back of the box, I think. Tell me that you wouldn't like to see that, lol! ��
    Love reading all the posts Jen! And hi to John, Lily, and Tonks, too!

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  72. I wish I lived closer to Universal, events like this one sound amazing!
    Please put me in for the poster, it's gorgeous! I need some new geeky art for my dorm room walls:)

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  73. This is awesome! It makes me want to take my son, though he is more into Dr. Who now than HP. Perhaps he'd like to go anyway! Makes me want to read the books all over again!

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  75. The poster is so pretty, I promise I'll give it a good home :D

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  76. I always live your virtual tours, especially sinc I haven't been back to Orlando since we moved 8 years ago! Very cool!

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  77. Thanks for sharing your experiences! I can't wait to take my two daughters to see all of it in person.

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  78. I will never get tired of candy shoppes. There's always so much to see in them, especially if they're themed! The wand makers' (and how cool that in 2016 people can say they make wands for a living) crafts look amazing, too.

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  79. The poster is cool. It would look cool with my Harry Potter shelf.

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  80. I've got a 9 year old who is counting the days until she gets her letter! She would just love the poster!

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  81. Do I see a craft tutorial for a letter mobile in our collective futures?

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  82. Thank you for always sharing your awesome photos!! I would love to hang that poster on my wall!!

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  83. Oh I would love that poster, it would look wonderful framed in our lounge room. Really hope I win 😀

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  84. I really love that poster. I've been looking for a Potter poster for our game room for awhile and I love that! Pick me!

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  85. That poster is beautiful! I can't believe they were giving those away for free. And that owl wand...breaking out the diy :)

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  86. That print is amazing! See, this is just another reason why you guys are amazing, J&j! Thank you for sharing it with a of us! Of course I would like to win; that print would go so well with my open at the close art...

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  87. This is awesome! I only got to go there once when I lived in Florida and it was before Diagon Alley even opened. Thanks for all the pictures!

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  88. Thank you for all the gorgeous pics! I need to e-mail you because I will be there next month. You could save some postage if I win the poster. :-D

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  89. Makes me miss my home state a lot more now. Thanks for taking us on a virtual trip through Potter-ville. I hope we can make our way back down there in the next year or two.

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  90. My brother is heading to Orlando and I told him to visit Epbot for insider info. He is just breaking into steampunk as well. I think he'll enjoy your site. Thank you! Long time reader, first time writer.
    PS. I love the poster as well.

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  91. We haven't made it to Universal yet, just DW twice. One of these days we'll get there, but there's so much to do at Disney!

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  92. My kids would go nuts if we won the poster.

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  93. Aw! I had been in Univsersal two weeks before the celebration and was absolutely heartbroken that I couldn't stay (naturally I went dressed in my slytherin robes and got lots of condolences from
    Everyone there because of Alan Rickman). That poster is absolutely stunning! I'd love to have that, I'd just have to find the right type of frame for it.

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  94. Matthew Lewis/Neville is on the newest season of Ripper Street! Hence the mustache :)

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  95. I'm just getting into the Potter-verse. A poster would be rad! :)

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  96. My friend would love this. She's a huge hp fan :D

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  97. My eyes are watering over the tributes. I didn't know a death of someone I never met could affect me so dang much. ;_;

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  98. Looks like so much fun. That poster would be perfect for my 10-year old who has just gotten into the Harry Potter books.

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  99. This all looks so fun! I probably would have spent all day looking at the printed things.

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  100. I would love that poster! Thanks for the tour. Going there is absolutely on my list, but haven't made it yet. I am "rereading" the series with Audible as I walk my dog every day, and I'm on Goblet of Fire. Makes that walk so much better!

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  101. This is so amazing! I get teary-eyed just looking at your pictures; I got to go to Universal for the first time last January, and it is AMAZING! I'm so jealous that you get to visit so frequently! But at least I get to live vicariously through your posts. ^_^

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  102. My friends were stuck in Florida the weekend before thanks to the blizzard that hit the east coast. While I was house sitting and taking care of their pets (a frog, turtle, dog, and cat) they spent a day at Hogwarts. I'm definitely a bit jealous but they brought me back a Hufflepuff quidditch pin :)

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  103. I love this!! And the poster is GORGEOUS!!

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  104. Great poster! I'd love to have that! :)

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  105. Thank you for such a fun post! Would love to own that poster ^_^

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  106. I would love the poster :) I hope I get to go to Universal sometime soonish :)

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  107. Man, I'd love to see this someday, but I'm not sure I've got anybody who's enough of a fan to go with me. Looks really cool, though!

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  108. The wand with the little owl, oh how precious!

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  109. Love love love! I just want to hang out with you guys for a day and geek out at Disney and Universal!

    Love the poster!!

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  110. Some day I will get to go there. Someday.

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  111. My dream vacation!! Thanks for the peek into the park! Love it!! Sue G

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  112. Thank you for sharing the pictures! I'm (im)patiently waiting for my two little girls to grow a little older before I can introduce them properly to the world of Harry Potter - books, coloring, costumes, wands, and trips. Seeing your pics helps. :-)

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  113. It looks like such a great celebration. Thanks for the round up! We have a goal to make frozen Butterbeer as delicious as Universal's this year.

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  114. Poster would be so great in our book nook

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  115. I've been to the parks 3 times since Diagon Alley has opened and I cry everytime I ride the train to Hogwarts... hahaha I can't wait until I get a chance to go to one of these celebrations. They seem so cool!

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  116. Beautiful pics! Thank you for sharing your adventure & your love of all things Potter with us. A big extra thanks for inspiring those of us who struggle with anxiety. <3

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  117. We were lucky enough to go to the London studios the weekend they opened. A friend is visiting this year, so we finally have an opportunity to go back (and I can't wait). One day we will make it to Florida!

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  118. I was recently at the universal park just to go to the two harry potter themed sections. Thoroughly enjoyed it. I would love a change to win that poster :)

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  119. Thanks for sharing your pictures! Wish I could go but really don't like going to the parks when they are super packed like that=/

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  120. Oh boy I'd definitely love to win that poster!! <3

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  121. I can't wait to eventually visit there.i will make it one day!
    I would also like a chance for the poster, if possible. Thank you.

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  122. I really hope to go to Harry Potter's Wizarding World one day. You got to see so many amazing things, especially the cosplay in your previous post. I would love to win that poster. My best friend is one of the biggest Potterheads I know, and her husband's currently deployed. So, giving her that poster as a gift would surely brighten her spirits.

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  123. I hope someday I get to go to universal to see the park myself. Thanks for posting this so those who can't make it get to see all the fun!

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  124. I would love the poster and so would my daughter! thanks for sharing with those of us who can't be there in person.

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  125. I seriously want to move back to Florida now :) I love Harry Potter though I'd be the local who only went in May or November lol

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  126. So jealous that this is something you get to do! I'm from the "far north" and anticipate if I get to go once I'll be lucky. Great photos!

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  127. The wand making looks incredible! Thank you for the gorgeous pictures!

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  128. Thank you for sharing, both the photographs and your second poster! I'll never be able to go to the Celebration (school librarian, time off in January won't happen), so I love to see it through your pictures. Dreaming about a trip of my own some summer!

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  129. One day I will get there. Thank you for taking me there in pictures.

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  130. I love that Bertie Botts cup and of course the Hedwig hat!

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  131. oh wow, that looks like it was so much fun! thank you for taking pictures and sharing them for everyone who couldn't go, it's the next best thing to actually being there. that poster is gorgeous too! it's awesome that they were giving them away for free!

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  132. Love all of your virtual tours at WWoHP. I think this will be the closest I ever get to going myself so I thank you for taking me along for the ride :0)

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  133. As a graphic designer, I really appreciate seeing the Mina Lima stuff. Thanks for sharing!

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  134. Thank you for sharing your tours and outings with us poor Potterites who can`t get to visit in person. You are much appreciated.

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  135. That poster is amazing. My daughter is only 6 weeks old, but we've already started reading Harry Potter to her. That poster is the perfect addition to a Harry Potter/Lilo & Stitch/Star Wars/Batman nursery. Okay. The everything fandom nursery.

    Here's a shot from her newborn photos with Snape's wand (taken the day he died, we were devastated and couldn't help it). I can't wait until she's big enough to go to Universal.

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  136. So very exciting! I had hoped to go, but alas, conflicts. I would love a chance for the poster to give to my daughter as a graduation present - sharing HP over the years has helped span THREE generations - my mom, my daughter, and I all went on one of the HP-themed UK vacations back in...2007, I think!

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  137. Oh, I can't wait to visit again and see that sweet shop!! Love that you got to go to the Celebration. Thank you for sharing all of the pics!! And that poster...GAH.

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  138. Pick me, pick me! ::grin:: More importantly, thank you for allowing those of us far away to enjoy this gloriousness through you!

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  139. Thank you so much for posting all of those wonderful pictures! I teared up at the small tribute one.

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  140. This is so awesome! I am jealous that you were able to go but so grateful you posted your pictures. My husband and I went to Universal Orlando for the first time this last summer and had the most amazing time.

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  141. Thank you so much for posting all of those wonderful pictures! I teared up at the small tribute one.

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  142. Thanks for sharing this with us unfortunate folk who don't get to go!

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  143. I am incredibly jealous of this entire shindig. I wish I lived anywhere NEAR Orlando so I could visit!

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  144. I think that Hedwig hat is hilarious!

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  145. Thank you for sharing so I can live vicariously through you! One day, I will get to see it all in person! For now, your photos, and that stunning poster will have to do!

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  146. I love watching craftspeople make things in front of me (and peppering them with questions...) - it's so cool that they had actual people working, not just a bunch of screen-used wands! A form of magic all its own. Thanks for sharing.

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  147. Gorgeous pictures! I so want to go someday!

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  148. Wonderful! I hope to get to England one day.

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  149. ahh I love all the details they can include in an exhibition like that!! HP Celebration is officially on my bucket list :)

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  150. this is on my bucket list as one day I will get to something harry potter it doesn't matter where though. living in Alaska makes it hard to travel. thank you for doing posts like this. it is nice to see one of my dreams through your eyes.

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  151. I can't wait to go there! And that poster on my walls.... OMG

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  152. Because of your posts I can't wait to see the new experience in Universal California in December. That poster is fantastic. the perspective is fantastic! I would love the poster but even better if it was signed by you and your sweetie!!

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  153. Want! That poster is fantastic.

    Also, I really dig your green shoes. They make me very happy.

    And now I want to take a lathe class to learn how to make wands.

    Finally.... super props to you for being able to handle all those lines and crowds! You're getting so much better! HIGH-FIVE!

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  154. Thanks for sharing all of the HP stuff. I love that you live so close to Universal and can go so often. EPBOT's a recent discovery for me (found through a Pinterest post of your beautiful HP Xmas tree) and I love it. :) I'm hoping they'll make a print of the wizarding schools map, but the Hogwarts Express one is wonderful, too. :)

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  155. I've been to the one in London and i'm STILL jealous, because this one seems so cool

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  156. I would love the poster. As a proud member of Slytherin house, I was happy to see such respect for our Headmaster.

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  157. So so cool! Still waitingfor a chance to take my family to Universal. Hoping to make it this year!

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  158. I hope the California version will be as impressive; limited geographical space may be an issue. The poster is so nice, such a great give-away, on their part and on yours!

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  159. Looks like I need to plan a new vacation next year, that looks really neat!

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  160. I am pining to go back again, thank you for the pictures! I would adore that poster.

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  161. That poster needs to be in a frame. In my house.

    PS So glad you were able to enjoy the celebration. I know crowds are often not your thing, and it looks like you came through with flying colors. :-)

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  162. Nice wands for sure! Looks like yall got great pics of the whole expo. that poster would look great in a vintage or streampunk frame.

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  163. I would LOVE to have the poster! I missed the event, but it was great seeing your recap!

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  164. That candy shop looks fantastic! You could post pictures from HP every week as far as I'm concerned.

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  165. It has apparently been much too long since I have been to Universal, so much new stuff since I was there two years ago. Would love to add the poster to my collection.

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  166. It would *almost* be worth the summer weather if I lived in Florida, if I got to see stuff like this all the time. So jealous!

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  167. Wow, something to try and get to in the future! Thanks for sharing, hoping for the poster.

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  168. Are those maybe the wands they sell at Ollivander's? Or what do they do with them all??

    Also, I would love to win the poster!

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  169. Wow, I'm so jealous! I've always wanted to go to Universal. I'm totally up for that poster, though!

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  170. Wow, something to try and get to in the future! Thanks for sharing, hoping for the poster.

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  171. Please tell me you have not Googled the cost of a lathe just to make more authentic wands.

    No judgement. Since I just did.

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  172. I...can't...wait! I'm in the middle of planning our trip, although I'm having some trouble trying to get the vacation packages to meld with the air transport on the universal Orlando site...a bit frustrating. I love the poster, and that triwizard cup!

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  173. I would love to go to this...!! I am making grabby-hands at all the stuff. Waaaant-gimme-gimme!

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  174. I'd love to win that poster, so I can give it to my daughter's school library! It would look fantastic there!

    Aud

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  175. I wish we had been able to schedule our vacation to coincide with the Celebration and Expo, but we will get to go in May!

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  176. That is so awesome!! We just went to the wizarding world in November when we were down for the Disney wine and dine half. Totally worth going to universal just for that experience alone.

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  177. Oh this just made me so happy to read about. I'd probably give that poster to my mom. Despite her introducing me to the series as a kid she and my sister are bigger Potterheads than I am! (Not sure how I managed that). Her birthday is in April too so we're hoping we can try to get to the Wizarding World in LA when it opens that same month.

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  178. I always love reading your posts and looking at all the pretty pictures, so I can pretend like I'm there instead of on the other side of the continent. Thank you!

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  179. I am always so jealous of your Potter & Disney posts. You make me want to move to Florida!
    <3 the beautiful poster too. I wonder if they can be bought...

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  180. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for bringing the magic to all of us who couldn't be there. I absolutely love these blog posts, since I am in Oregon and getting to Orland just hasn't been feasible for my husband and me yet! But, they're opening a wizarding world in LA (hooray!) and that's so much closer! So anyways, thanks again for these kinds of posts to share the costumes and eye candy and pretties and magic with all of us all over the world! Also, that poster is gorgeous! Here's to hoping I'm the lucky winner :)

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  181. Thanks for sharing this all with us! And thanks for sharing the extra poster! :)

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  182. Love being able to see everything through your eyes! Thank you! The extra poster is awesome!

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  183. So cool! I can't wait to go and see the theme park in person!

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  184. So cool! I've been to the Potter parks a few times now, but have never gone for one of the specific celebrations. Looks like a lot of fun. Maybe I'll have to go to the next one.

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  185. Oh my gosh!! I just had a baby and now I'm dreaming of taking my daughter around these places. I can't wait to share Harry Potter with her.

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  186. Thanks for always including us in your adventures! And that poster really is beautiful!

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  187. I have the same green Converse. :-)

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